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  • Justin O'Conner
    firm grasp on its complexities Yet eight of those applicants couldn t answer basic C questions Here s an example question from our interview checklist Tell me the difference between a reference type and a value type and provide some examples of each Why would you use a value type over a reference type Only one of those eight could provide any kind of intelligible answer to that question How does this happen Who is going around applying for senior level positions when they re barely capable of producing Hello World Lots of people apparently The worst part is that most of these folks I d wager have no clue just how much they suck The Formula for Suck Getting back into the companies are hiring the least stupid candidate idea imagine this for a second you re a middle tier manager at a company let s call them Golden Persisting and you need to fill a Level 3 Software Engineer position You ve only got a shoe string budget because upper management keeps telling you that your department is an expense and keeps chopping it in half Instead of the market salary X you can only afford to pay a fraction of that 0 75X or less Naturally all of the skilled candidates know that they can make X instead of 0 75X Instantly you lose those folks What you ve got left are fresh faced newbies who are a gamble but will take lower pay and people blowing smoke up your ass Both of these types will overestimate their skill level but dammit you have to hire someone or else you re going to miss your deadlines To top it all off if you wait too long to fill the position upper management will cut it out of the budget because you clearly didn t need it right As a result of your need to make a hire and the lacking budget you end up hiring the least stupid of those newbies or smoke blowers Now that person has a higher level position on their resume They are suddenly worth that position Once they decide they re ready to move up they ll find that Golden Persisting has no opportunity for advancement Suddenly our under qualified Level 3 developer is on the prowl for a Senior level position That s how it happens Well that or any of the hundreds of similar scenarios that corporate development produces Those fresh faced newbies are likely to end up as the next wave of smoke blowers as they find themselves in jobs they re not quite prepared for The old smoke blowers end up in management usually due to their tenure in their lead positions It s a vicious cycle of suck The Fateful Eight I wish I could sit here and tell you that this rampant quality problem has a simple solution The issues are myriad however and there s little to no chance that most of them will ever be fixed Let s look at a few of our fateful eight Senior Engineer candidates for some less than elegant examples of why this problem is endemic One of the candidates attended a school infamous for its poor IT program and literally admitted he had never hand written a line of code in his life he had only copy pasted Another candidate spat out all the buzzwords but when pressed to elaborate came up empty He ended up being a Java only developer who had never touched C before The most promising of the eight developers told us a story about how he made a bold move one night and ripped out half the codebase and replaced it overnight without telling anyone about it He mentioned that it caused problems and bugs for months He told us this story in response to a prompt asking for a time that he had taken charge and led the team At this point you re probably asking a very relevant question why didn t you filter these guys out before they even made it to the interview stage The Problem With 110 We didn t filter these guys out because in each and every case their resumes and phone interviews were just fine We tend not to give a lot of weight to a resume After all as we ve seen a hundred times a resume is usually more filler than thriller and its accuracy is dubious at best Instead we rely on a phone interview conducted by our in house recruiter as the first line of defense God knows how many potential candidates she s eliminated using the phone interview I haven t asked and I don t want to know The ten folks that we ve interviewed in person were people who passed the phone interview filter Our phone interview is no joke either We ask about 12 questions that run a gamut between basic C to advanced topics but there s only so much you can do over the phone The questions have to be designed in such a way to prevent long rambling responses the recruiter is smart but she s no techie she would have a hard time distinguishing the correct rambling answer from the wrong one while also getting a quick gauge of which position they ll be recommended for The Senior level recommendations answer at least 8 of the questions correctly and importantly do not try to BS the other four The only explanation I have for some of these folks is that they were googling the questions as the recruiter asked them Honestly though some bad apples were always going to slip through Phone interviews are not an amazing way to filter candidates and we might as well not even look at their resumes for all the good they ve done us Ever since I started doing interviews I assumed that I would end up face to face with some stinkers occasionally but an 80

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/ (2016-05-01)
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  • About — Justin O'Conner
    strongly passionate about quite a few things In my personal life I love video games D D writing music tinkering with various harebrained uses for my Raspberry Pi 2 and drinking craft beer In my professional life I am an enthusiastic software engineer who strives to rise above any challenge placed before me This site is two things my personal and semi professional blog and my public portfolio and project repository I m very likely to use the blog sparingly However I intend this site to be a central hub for hosting all of my various projects and prototypes not just to keep them all organized but also to serve as a representation of my skills and experience so that a cool place will hire me to do cool things Or maybe I ll do my own cool things My driving aspiration and my contribution to the world is to make games that people enjoy I ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit and starting a game studio has been my goal since I was 13 So far my expertise in game development and design has remained a personal endeavor all of my professional experience is related to more traditional application

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/about/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Portfolio (Games) — Justin O'Conner
    for a college class and evolved from there It s obviously full of assets from other games you can see my poor attempts at art here and there there s a reason the term programmer art was coined and as such I must say this game and its source code are here for educational purposes only Download the game here 151 MB includes NET 4 0 and XNA 4 redistributables

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/projectsportfolio/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Portfolio (Biz) — Justin O'Conner
    Biz Music Misc Navigation Blog About Portfolio Games Portfolio Biz Music Misc I m still getting my projects ready for distribution Once they are ready they will appear here 2016

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/portfolio-prof/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Music — Justin O'Conner
    About Portfolio Games Portfolio Biz Music Misc Navigation Blog About Portfolio Games Portfolio Biz Music Misc https soundcloud com justinoconner https soundcloud com alltherightfrequencies 2016 Justin O Conner Powered by

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/music/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Misc. — Justin O'Conner
    handling epic levels in Pathfinder The Mythic Handbook is still the closest thing Pathfinder has to epic rules unless you utilize D D s Epic Level Handbook However I don t feel like the Epic Level Handbook really fits the spirit of high level Pathfinder play so I wrote up a custom set of prestige classes to be utilized by my players beyond level 20 I have posted these classes and my other rules here on Google Docs I also created a set of tables for Epic XP requirements for levels 21 40 which you might find useful if you re trying to run an epic level Pathfinder game Statistics for Azathoth As a challenge to myself to see if I could use Pathfinder s Mythic rules appropriately I designed a mythic class monster for my party to face I chose Azathoth a shapeless mass of pure chaos that the players had encountered a few times due to planar mishaps during high level play For the most part I designed Azathoth by the book and tried to balance the encounter for a party of six 20th level Pathfinder characters If you didn t know 20th level Pathfinder characters are insanely

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/misc/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Is the World of Warcraft Team Afraid of Legacy Servers? — Justin O'Conner
    and receives in my opinion a very passive aggressive answer Even the longer version starts at around 30 minutes in where he goes on to discuss the drawbacks of old WoW comes off as dismissive and almost reductive We all know that old World of Warcraft had a ton of problems Class spec balance was all sorts of screwed up the leveling experience was a grind to put it nicely and PvP was horribly broken The game had imperfections and Blizzard must believe that the modern World of Warcraft is in every way an upgrade on the old one However something they are failing to consider is that many of us loved classic WoW in spite and in some cases because of those imperfections Classic WoW is like a beloved loyal dog that sometimes pees on the floor and tears up your shoes It might be inconvenient but it s also kind of endearing The old World of Warcraft was a game that felt like it was made by MMO fans for MMO fans It had a clear designer s touch to it a concept I hope to cover in greater detail some time in the future It felt like it was designed as it was because the designers wanted to play that game To contrast much of modern WoW feels strongly designed by committee It feels like in so many places the designers said what s going to please the most people most of the time The result of the dissatisfaction is obvious Players had flocked to Nostalrius and other private servers in numbers that dwarfed many AAA MMO s still operating today The desire to play WoW as it once was is undeniable In the aftermath of Nostalrius shutdown many people are making a strong effort to be clear we are willing to pay So why then is Blizzard not tapping into this market For one I think Blizzard is afraid of Legacy servers As a company as a team and as a juggernaut of the games industry Blizzard is deathly afraid that legacy servers would be too popular It would invalidate the hard work of hundreds of dedicated employees over years and years of continued development It would announce to everyone that yes they were right Cataclysm Mists of Pandaria Warlords of Draenor did all lack something that the first three iterations of the game Classic Burning Crusade Wrath of the Lich King had some intangible missing attribute that made the experience feel hollow when it should have felt epic Let s take a step back from that accusation for a minute Let s assume that Blizzard isn t afraid of Legacy servers but instead would rather do them right as opposed to just slapping a server up and charging extra to play on it They are probably concerned that the old software has no way of fitting into their current infrastructure The security team likely knows about several exploitable flaws in the old client that have

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/blog/2016/4/14/is-the-world-of-warcraft-team-afraid-of-legacy-servers (2016-05-01)
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  • On the quality problem of today's software engineers — Justin O'Conner
    ass Both of these types will overestimate their skill level but dammit you have to hire someone or else you re going to miss your deadlines To top it all off if you wait too long to fill the position upper management will cut it out of the budget because you clearly didn t need it right As a result of your need to make a hire and the lacking budget you end up hiring the least stupid of those newbies or smoke blowers Now that person has a higher level position on their resume They are suddenly worth that position Once they decide they re ready to move up they ll find that Golden Persisting has no opportunity for advancement Suddenly our under qualified Level 3 developer is on the prowl for a Senior level position That s how it happens Well that or any of the hundreds of similar scenarios that corporate development produces Those fresh faced newbies are likely to end up as the next wave of smoke blowers as they find themselves in jobs they re not quite prepared for The old smoke blowers end up in management usually due to their tenure in their lead positions It s a vicious cycle of suck The Fateful Eight I wish I could sit here and tell you that this rampant quality problem has a simple solution The issues are myriad however and there s little to no chance that most of them will ever be fixed Let s look at a few of our fateful eight Senior Engineer candidates for some less than elegant examples of why this problem is endemic One of the candidates attended a school infamous for its poor IT program and literally admitted he had never hand written a line of code in his life he had only copy pasted Another candidate spat out all the buzzwords but when pressed to elaborate came up empty He ended up being a Java only developer who had never touched C before The most promising of the eight developers told us a story about how he made a bold move one night and ripped out half the codebase and replaced it overnight without telling anyone about it He mentioned that it caused problems and bugs for months He told us this story in response to a prompt asking for a time that he had taken charge and led the team At this point you re probably asking a very relevant question why didn t you filter these guys out before they even made it to the interview stage The Problem With 110 We didn t filter these guys out because in each and every case their resumes and phone interviews were just fine We tend not to give a lot of weight to a resume After all as we ve seen a hundred times a resume is usually more filler than thriller and its accuracy is dubious at best Instead we rely on a phone interview

    Original URL path: http://www.justinoconner.me/blog/2016/3/13/b2h7xfxww4ejdsqmfy4rzdgu1352vt (2016-05-01)
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